Flamboyant Internet entrepreneur Kim Dotcom and three of his former colleagues have lost their latest bid to avoid extradition to the US to face criminal charges. New Zealand's Court of Appeal on Thursday upheld earlier court rulings that found the men were eligible to be handed over to US authorities, the AP reports. Dotcom's lawyer Ira Rothken said they were disappointed with the judgment and planned to file an appeal with New Zealand's Supreme Court. "We have now been to three courts each with a different legal analysis," Rothken tweeted. Dotcom, born in Germany as Kim Schmitz, was granted permanent residency in New Zealand in 2010.
The latest decision comes more than six years after US authorities shut down Dotcom's file-sharing website Megaupload and filed charges of conspiracy, racketeering, and money laundering against Dotcom and his colleagues. If found guilty, they could face decades in prison. Megaupload was once one of the internet's most popular sites. US prosecutors say it raked in at least $175 million, mainly from people using it for illegal downloads. Dotcom argues that he can't be held responsible for others who chose to use his site for illegal purposes, and that any case against him should have been heard in civil court. He says he never lived in the US or even visited the country and didn't have a company there.
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